After much back and forth between Xbox and Sony over the availability of Call of Duty on other systems should Microsoft’s upcoming acquisition of Activision Blizzard go through, Xbox head Phil Spencer has just add another piece of hardware to the mix: the Nintendo Switch.
By Tom Warren of The VergeSpencer told WSJ Live today that not only will Call of Duty be available on PlayStation, but that he also wants to bring it to Nintendo’s hybrid device.
“Call of Duty will be available specifically on PlayStation. I would love to see it on Switch, I would love to see the game playable on many different screens. Our intention is to treat Call of Duty like Minecraft.”
Minecraft, for context, is available on an absurd number of platforms spanning PC and Mac, iOS and Android and Windows Phone, several Xbox, PlayStation and Nintendo systems, Apple TV, Raspberry Pi, and more. So far, Call of Duty has only come to PlayStation, Xbox, and PC, and the planned acquisition has many parties wondering if PlayStation might eventually be dropped from the mix.
Last I heard, Sony’s Jim Ryan alleged that Microsoft had “only proposed that Call of Duty stay on PlayStation for three years after the current deal between Activision and Sony ends”, calling the proposal “inadequate on many levels”. .
On Spencer’s side, he reiterated that while Call of Duty will be coming to Game Pass, he still intends to bring it to PlayStation on the same day – but he stopped short of saying how long it will be, or if Xbox owners might not get other special benefits on other platforms.
Still, the guideline in Spencer’s past statements has been that Xbox’s goal is to bring games to as many people as possible on as many platforms as possible. He mentioned it again in the second half of his quote on WSJ Live, emphasizing what the goal of the Activision Blizzard deal for Xbox was:
“This opportunity [the acquisition] is really about mobile for us,” he said. “When you think about three billion people playing video games, there’s only about 200 million console households.”
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022) – Campaign Screenshots
Activision Blizzard’s mobile arm, King, has already been named as the main reason for the acquisition, including big mobile franchises like Candy Crush with it. That’s a big plus for a company like Xbox, which currently doesn’t have much of a presence in the mobile space.
The acquisition battle has been particularly odd lately as several governments begin to investigate the massive acquisition for potential antitrust violations. Xbox recently launched a website to tell the public what they think the benefits of the buyout are. Meanwhile, Sony slammed the deal, saying it had “major negative implications for gamers” and urging governments to review it.
As for Call of Duty on Switch? So far Nintendo has largely stayed away from back and forth, although in 2019 there were rumors of Xbox Live on Switch, and in 2021 there were further rumors that Xbox Game Pass would appear the same way. While that never materialized, we got Cuphead and Ori and the Blind Forest, which were previously Xbox exclusives. Maybe the talks haven’t stalled after all.
Rebekah Valentine is a reporter for IGN. You can find her on Twitter @duckvalentine.
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